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Beef Cattle - Assurance System Producer Program

The Assurance System Producer Program provides beef cattle producers with a rebate for veterinarian assessments, Verified Beef Production Plus (VBP+) audit and approved eligible equipment expenses that improve biosecurity and animal welfare practices. Eligible applicants must meet program criteria below.

Effective April 1, 2020, maximum rebates for eligible expenses have been removed with the exception of basic weigh indicators. Please see Eligible Expenses for more details.

Eligibility

You are eligible to apply for a rebate if:

  • You are a Saskatchewan beef producer (individual, partnership, corporation or First Nations);
  • You are at least 18 years of age;
  • You file income tax demonstrating a minimum $50,000 of gross farm income in Saskatchewan in the year of application or the year prior to the application; or
  • You are a First Nations individual or a First Nation carrying out the business of farming and can demonstrate a minimum $50,000 of gross farm income in the year of application or the year prior to the application; and
  • You have a Saskatchewan Premises Identification (PID) number; and
  • You have completed the required VBP+ training or certification steps.

For the purposes of the program, related applicants are subject to the maximum program rebate of either $2,500 or $15,000 depending on the application stream. Related applicants include spouses, relatives in the same residence or individuals who have controlling interests in more than one operation.

Applicants who share livestock facilities will be considered one operation and subject to the maximum program rebate of either $2,500 or $15,000 depending on the application stream.

Depending on the application stream, maximum program rebate is per operation which may include more than one project location or a related applicant and includes Assurance System Producer Program funding from all species on the operation (beef, bison, sheep, etc.).

For clarification regarding eligibility, related applicants or shared livestock facilities, contact the Agriculture Knowledge Centre at 1-866-457-2377.

Rebate Details

Funding is available for veterinarian assessments, VBP+ audits and approved eligible equipment. Equipment must be installed and/or functional to be eligible for rebate. Pictures may be requested.

Approved eligible costs are funded at 50 per cent to a maximum program rebate as follows:

  • Training Stream - $2,500
    • Step 1: Complete the VBP+ training.
    • Step 2: Have a veterinarian assessment and Biosecurity/Animal Welfare Equipment Recommendation Report completed.
    • The veterinarian assessment and Biosecurity/Animal Welfare Equipment Recommendation Report must be completed before any equipment purchases are made.
  • Certification Stream - $15,000
    • Step 1: Complete the VBP+ training.
    • Step 2: Have a veterinarian assessment and Biosecurity/Animal Welfare Equipment Recommendation Report completed.
    • Step 3: Complete the VBP+ Audit and achieve Certification.
    • The veterinarian assessment and Biosecurity/Animal Welfare Equipment Recommendation Report must be completed before any equipment purchases are made.

Maximum rebate for veterinarian assessments and completing the Biosecurity/Animal Welfare Equipment Recommendation Report is $500 per operation (this can include more than one assessment or a follow up assessment). Applicants who share livestock facilities will be considered one operation and subject to the maximum rebate of $500.

VBP+ audit rebates are eligible to a maximum rebate: of $625 for Level 1 (cow-calf), $875 for Level 2 (backgrounding) and $1,000 for Level 3 (feedlots).

Program payments are subject to a minimum rebate of $250.

VBP+ Training, Audit and Certification

Information on the VBP+ training and the On-farm Audit and Certification process is available on the Verified Beef Production Plus website.

Veterinarian Assessment and Biosecurity/Animal Welfare Equipment Recommendation Report

The veterinarian assessment must be completed by a veterinarian licensed with the Saskatchewan Veterinary Medical Association. The veterinarian must be an arm's-length third party from the operation being assessed. The legal land location of the project location/facility assessed must be identified on the Biosecurity/Animal Welfare Equipment Recommendation Report. After the visit to the operation, the veterinarian completes the online Biosecurity/Animal Welfare Equipment Recommendation Report based on the on-farm assessment, saves a copy for their records and provides a copy to the producer.

Note: The Biosecurity/Animal Welfare Equipment Recommendation Report must be completed electronically by the veterinarian. Handwritten reports will not be accepted.

Download the veterinarian biosecurity/animal welfare equipment recommendation report.

Before you apply

  • Review eligibility;
  • Complete the VBP+ training;
  • Have a veterinarian assessment and the Biosecurity/Animal Welfare Equipment Recommendation Report completed by a veterinarian licensed with the Saskatchewan Veterinary Medical Association; and
  • If applying under the Certification Stream, complete the VBP+ audit and achieve certification.

Eligible Expenses

Equipment items below are rebated at 50 per cent of eligible costs with the exception of a basic weigh indicator which is rebated to a maximum of $550, whether purchased as part of the weigh scale package or standalone. There is no limit to the number of equipment items a producer may purchase within the program maximums. Items must be identified on the Biosecurity/Animal Welfare Equipment Recommendation Report, completed by the veterinarian, to be considered for funding. Items as identified on the Biosecurity/Animal Welfare Equipment Recommendation Report regardless of risk level will be considered for funding.

Eligible items include:

Biosecurity

  • Segregation pen:
    • Metal panels, metal gate(s) and metal feed bunk(s);
    • Gates(s) and metal bunk(s) must be purchased and claimed in conjunction with the metal panels.
  • Deadstock site (fencing):
    • Posts (metal or wood), wire, fasteners (staples);
  • Fencing to prevent access to stored feed and standing water:
    • Posts (metal or wood), wire, fasteners (staples).
  • Cleaning and disinfection station(s):
    • Hand wash and/or boot wash stations.

Animal Welfare Improvements

  • Tilt table:
    • Stationary or portable, hydraulic or manual;
  • Hoof trimming chute:
    • Stationary or portable, leg restraints;
  • Bud box:
    • Metal;
  • Cattle oiler;
  • Loading chute:
    • Metal, and
    • Portable or stationary, adjustable;
  • Livestock scale:
    • Weigh scale package. Package may include load bars or load cells, platform, basic weigh indicator only and cables;
    • Max rebate: $550 for basic weigh indicator when purchased as part of package or standalone;
  • Feed scale:
    • Scale used in conjunction with feed or mixing wagon,
    • Feed or mixing wagons are not eligible;
  • Squeeze chute:
    • All chute types including portable or stationary, manual or hydraulic including powerpak, all types of gates, built-in palpation cage, extra restraints including neck extender, head holder, sternum bar;
    • Head gate if purchased standalone;
  • Alleyway:
    • Metal – all types and lengths;
  • Crowding tub:
    • Metal – all sizes;
  • Traction matting for loading facilities and working cattle facilities:
    • Rubber matting;
  • Calf-catching pen:
    • To be used with an all-terrain vehicle, and
    • All-terrain vehicles are not eligible;
  • Calving/maternity pen:
    • Metal, all types with head gate;
  • Portable calf cart:
    • With headlock;
  • Calf tip table/chute/spin chute:
    • Including neck extender;
  • Remote surveillance for calving:
    • All equipment, antennas and cables to support the following:up to four indoor cameras and up to four outdoor cameras (e.g.: 20x PTZ), repeater and recording unit with hard drive;
  • Pain control administration training by a veterinarian:
    • Training costs and mileage; and
  • Vaccine cooler:
    • Vaccination/medication organization system including vaccine tubing, holsters and medicine administration guns.

Ineligible Expenses

Ineligible expenses include:

  • Start-up operations i.e. locations where livestock facilities with permanent infrastructure necessary for confining and handling livestock did not previously exist;
  • Expenditures prior to date of veterinarian's Biosecurity/Animal Welfare Equipment Recommendation Report and program launch of Oct. 11, 2018;
  • Equipment or items not recommended or identified on the Biosecurity/Animal Welfare Equipment Recommendation Report;
  • VBP+ training costs for either on-line or in-person workshop;
  • Equipment or items such as: windbreaks, windbreak panels concrete, paddock slabs, water bowls or water appliances;
  • Applicant, employee or third-party salaries or labour and installation costs or administration costs;
  • Basic repair and maintenance or ongoing expenses;
  • Purchase of buildings or construction of new buildings, additions, or building modifications;
  • Cost for use of own equipment or tools;
  • Fabricated items or equipment not purchased from a recognized dealer. For the purposes of the program, a recognized dealer is typically defined as a business where manufacturing is a key service or the business is an authorized dealer for a certain item(s);
  • Leased, used or self-made equipment, including any equipment purchased at auction;
  • Extended warranty or insurance costs;
  • Financing, interest, legal fees or taxes;
  • In-kind materials;
  • Plumbing and electrical expenses; and
  • Shipping, freight or brokerage fees.
  • Any submissions for rebate utilizing a third-party vendor must be from a vendor who is third party arm's-length, or the claim will be funded based on the actual purchase price and require the submission of original invoices.

Deadlines

Applications will be accepted on an ongoing basis.
All claims must be received by December 31, 2022.

Apply

Download the Assurance System Producer Program Application - Beef

Note:

  • It is recommended this application form be saved to your computer before entering in the information.
  • If you previously applied and were granted funding under this program between the dates of April 1, 2019, and March 20, 2020, when equipment rebate maximums were in place, your application will be automatically reprocessed under the current program guidelines posted above. If it is determined you are eligible for additional funding, your application will be re-processed and any additional payments will be forthcoming. Payments are expected to be issued by April 30, 2020.

Completed applications can be submitted by email to Programs Branch or by mail to:

Assurance System Producer Program,
Ministry of Agriculture, Programs Branch
329 - 3085 Albert Street
Regina SK  S4S 0B1